Do You Have a Personal Development Plan? - Heather Santo

Do You Have a Personal Development Plan?

By Heather Santo | Business

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Reading, writing, and arithmetic – the three basics of a traditional education. As an entrepreneur, you already know how important the writing and arithmetic are to your business.  Reading is just as important and isn’t it about time you finished a few business-related books that you have hanging around your nightstand? I know how easy it can be to buy a book with a good intention and then never seem to have time to get around to it. Before you know it, the year has passed by and that book is still in your bedroom or on a shelf collecting dust.

It is easy to have the intention to do something, but it is the follow-through than can pose a bit of a challenge. If you did not include reading into setting your goals for the year, it’s not too late to make a change.

Here is a guide to help you dispel all of the reasons that you are not taking the time for personal development:

 

” I don’t need to read.”: The average adult reads fewer than two books a year. Can you believe it?? If you read a book a month, you are automatically in the top 5% of the population when it comes to educating yourself. Reading informational, educational, or inspirational books is one of the easiest, least expensive ways to give yourself a competitive edge. Check out Amazon for great deals on books and even some that are free that you can also download on your Kindle.

“I don’t have time to read. I’m too busy.”: No free time to crack open a book? I have one word for you: AUDIO. Books on CD, books on tape, books downloaded from places like audible.com, podcasts etc…  You have a plethora of choices for listening to books. Borrow a few from the library, download a book from the Internet, and load up your MP3 player. Listen away while you’re in the kitchen, exercising, or any time spare that you have.

If you don’t enjoy books on audio, as part of my goals to read 50 books this year, I make it a point to read 8 pages/day. That doesn’t sound like a lot, but that bans the excuse that you have no time. If you have extra time read more. Set a goal that you know that you can reach to keep developing your mental attitude.

“If you don’t know what to read”: If you don’t know where to start, choose one area you’d like to improve upon, whether it’s public speaking, networking, technical skills, positivity, strength, overcoming fears or whatever you need most. Next, head over to Amazon.com and look at top-sellers in that field, or put out a call for suggestions on your Twitter stream, Facebook page, or blog. Pick one and start!

“If you forget what you read”: Even the most dedicated reader can burn through books, then move on the next, only to forget what was read in the first volume. While knowledge is great for knowledge’s sake, it really only becomes wisdom when you put it to use. One of the things that I do is taking notes or I’ll highlight all over the book to really put it into my brain. There are some books that I know that I need to read more than one time to really feel the impact and some need read once per year.

By reflecting on what you read and choosing one or two lessons to implement in your own life, you will convert your knowledge to wisdom and improve your business. Think about joining a business book club where you read a business-related book a month or quarter, and discuss what you’re learning. That will also help the lessons sink in.

 Keep this quote in mind when you are considering whether or not you want to read: “You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.” ~ Charles “Tremendous” Jones

 

Headshot Footer Heather Santo is proudly a Certified Virtual Assistant with over 15 years of customer service experience via face-to face, telephone and internet. She also spent time in corporate America as a Human Resources Manager performing generalist duties and specializing in recruiting. She now enjoys using her talents to serve her clients and help them to operate their businesses efficiently. If you have found this article to be of value, please share it!

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